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Recommended Discs & Deals: ‘Blood Simple,’ ‘High Noon,’ ‘Beauty and the Beast,’ and More

Written by on September 20, 2016 

Blood Simple_1

Every week we dive into the cream of the crop when it comes to home releases, including Blu-ray and DVDs, as well as recommended deals of the week. Check out our rundown below and return every Tuesday for the best (or most interesting) films one can take home. Note that if you’re looking to support the site, every purchase you make through the links below helps us and is greatly appreciated.

Blood Simple (Joel and Ethan Coen)

Blood Simple cover

For as accomplished as Joel and Ethan Coen’s debut Blood Simple comes across as to a viewer, like any director, they can’t help but recognize their flaws. That’s not to say their newly restored debut, now available on The Criterion Collection, doesn’t look and sound gorgeous — every bead of sweat dripping down M. Emmet Walsh’s face and every gun blow feels like you’re right there in the sweltering Texas landscape — but there’s an undeniable charm in their recounting of the making of the film. Read our full feature here. – Jordan R.

Beauty and the Beast (Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise)


A tale as old as time gets the anniversary Blu-ray treatment this week as Beauty and the Beast celebrates 25 years of enchantment. This Walt Disney Signature Collection edition actually four different versions: alongside the theatrical film, there’s an extended version with the “Human Again” song sequence and a sing-along version, as well as a work-in-progress version available digitally. Along with many more extras, including a sneak peek at next year’s live-action version, it sounds like an essential pick-up. – Jordan R.

Cat People (Jacques Tourneur)


The first of the horror films producer Val Lewton made for RKO Pictures redefined the genre by leaving its most frightening terrors to its audience’s imagination. Simone Simon stars as a Serbian émigré in Manhattan who believes that, because of an ancient curse, any physical intimacy with the man she loves (Kent Smith) will turn her into a feline predator. Lewton, a consummate producer-auteur who oversaw every aspect of his projects, found an ideal director in Jacques Tourneur, a chiaroscuro stylist adept at keeping viewers off-kilter with startling compositions and psychological innuendo. Together, they eschewed the canned effects of earlier monster movies in favor of shocking with subtle shadows and creative audio cues. One of the studio’s most successful movies of the 1940s, Cat People raised the creature feature to new heights of sophistication and mystery. – Criterion.com

High Noon (Fred Zinnemann)


They’ve been home to some of the finest home video releases and now Olive Films is launching their Signature Edition series, kicked off by the classic, nail-biting western High Noon. Featuring a pristine new 4K restoration, also included is a batch of bonus features, most notably a video on the history of the film in narrated by the Anton Yelchin , another on career of producer-turned-director Stanley Kramer, and one about the Black List as it effected screenwriter Carl Foreman. While one wishes the featurette on the editing was a bit more informative and in-depth, it doesn’t take away that this is the definitive edition of a deeply influential classic. – Jordan R.

Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising (Nicholas Stoller)


Even in its best moments, Neighbors carried an unwanted whiff of testosterone — a hyperactive frat culture that was softened and still felt out of touch with the unabashed exuberance of the movie. Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising corrects that problem so thoroughly that it not only improves on the original; it also becomes one of the most progressive mainstream movies of the last decade. Analogous to last year’s breathtakingly joyful Magic Mike XXL, Neighbors 2 is a celebration of feminist individuality — a parade of women who challenge every convention of the genre (and society) by lifting up instead of punching down. – Michael S. (full review)

Also Arriving This Week

Free State of Jones (review)
Johnny Guitar
Ma ma (review)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadow (review)

Recommended Deals of the Week

Top Deal: A huge selection of Blu-rays are currently 3 for $19.99 at Amazon.

The American (Blu-ray) – $7.34

Amelie (Blu-ray) – $7.33

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (Blu-ray) – $8.19

Beginners (Blu-ray) – $6.25

Bone Tomahawk (Blu-ray) – $9.99

The Brothers Bloom (Blu-ray) – $10.06

The Cabin in the Woods (Blu-ray) – $8.37

Casino (Blu-ray) – $9.49

Cloud Atlas (Blu-ray) – $7.90

Django Unchained (Blu-ray) – $7.99

Eastern Promises (Blu-ray) – $7.02

Far From the Madding Crowd (Blu-ray) – $9.99

Godzilla (Blu-ray) – $10.00

The Grand Budapest Hotel (Blu-ray) – $7.99

Greenberg (Blu-ray) – $5.10

Heat (Blu-ray) – $9.96

Holy Motors (Blu-ray) – $10.19

The Informant! (Blu-ray) – $7.90

Inglorious Basterds (Blu-ray) – $7.99

Inherent Vice (Blu-ray) – $10.75

Interstellar (Blu-ray) – $9.99

It Follows (Blu-ray) – $7.99

Jaws (Blu-ray) – $7.88

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (Blu-ray) – $9.72

Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (Blu-ray) – $9.89

The Lady From Shanghai (Blu-ray) – $8.99

Lincoln (Blu-ray) – $9.94

Looper (Blu-ray) – $7.88

Lost In Translation (Blu-ray) – $9.49

Magnolia (Blu-ray) – $8.49

The Magnificent Seven (Blu-ray) – $7.99

The Man Who Wasn’t There (Blu-ray) – $9.53

Martha Marcy May Marlene (Blu-ray) – $5.26

Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (Blu-ray) – $8.99

Michael Clayton (Blu-ray) – $9.69

Moneyball (Blu-ray) – $9.99

Nebraska (Blu-ray) – $8.90

Never Let Me Go (Blu-ray) – $7.50

No Country For Old Men (Blu-ray) – $4.96

ParaNorman (Blu-ray) – $8.99

Persepolis (Blu-ray) – $9.90

The Piano (Blu-ray) – $7.34

Pulp Fiction (Blu-ray) – $8.74

Road to Perdition (Blu-ray) – $8.81

The Searchers / Wild Bunch / How the West Was Won (Blu-ray) – $111.38

Sex, Lies, and Videotape (Blu-ray) – $6.32

Short Term 12 (Blu-ray) – $9.42

Shutter Island (Blu-ray) – $6.79

A Serious Man (Blu-ray) – $5.61

A Single Man (Blu-ray) – $5.80

Somewhere (Blu-ray) – $5.20

Terminator 2: Judgment Day (Blu-ray) – $7.70

There Will Be Blood (Blu-ray) – $5.99

Tinker Sailor Soldier Spy (Blu-ray) – $6.49

To the Wonder (Blu-ray) – $8.48

Volver (Blu-ray) – $5.95

Waltz With Bashir (Blu-ray) – $6.50

Where the Wild Things Are (Blu-ray) – $7.07

The Wolf of Wall Street (Blu-ray) – $9.99

The Wrestler (Blu-ray) – $8.39

See all Blu-ray deals.

What are you picking up this week?

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